food is good

Posted on Posted in designing, food and garden, projects

lace is everywhere . . . even in a cheese; i just love the subtle contrast of the cream and white in this piece, with that spidery band of deep, deep blue drifting between. it looks like a snowscape or even a foggy seascape. there might be a shawl in that . . .

SO. yesterday my buddy kim (from class) and i set out at 8 am, in the rain, for cleveland to enjoy the wonders of what i like to call “real” marketing. we arrived an hour later at the old west side market, and this time i was determined to bring home sightseeing photos.

you like food, right?
this place is a veritable wonderland of smells, sounds, and flavors, all revolving around that very subject. it was a little less crowded today i think, which was good for getting some great pictures to share. the first thing we did was head straight for the chicken seller so kim could get some of her favorite sausage.

then we headed for my personal favorite—pasta

they were already out of two flavors i would have liked to try, but i did score some red pepper fettucini, then kicked myself later for not getting some of that black squid ink pasta on the end (it’s easy to get confused and forget in a crowd like that).

but i made up for it by making sure i went home with some of these yummies

we moved along quickly, stopping here and there to peruse any tasty-looking items that caught our fancy, and were completely arrested by what we saw at the mediterra bakehouse stall.

sorry, he’s taken—his adorable girlfriend was right there with him (she’s very smart i think).

but what nice buns! a nice couple—just look at the beautiful wares they were offering

we made sure we each went home with some of that. i got some semolina sesame bread, and some mt. athos fire bread, which is made from a 30-year-old starter.

we also made sure to pick up some of this

mmm, cake. and they had key lime tarts which is what i picked.
i was so excited to be there . . . this is one of the things i really miss about living in NYC—good fresh marketing with real people behind the counter, ready to expound on the glory of their products. i just can’t get into shopping at the supermarkets here in the same way.

next we headed off to a place that neither of us had been before, to suss out what we heard was a great asian market.

i haven’t been in a store like this since we moved here . . . several thousand square feet of asian groceries, fresh vegetables, and fresh fish. there isn’t anything like it anywhere near us, and our supermarkets don’t carry this stuff (and darn it, i still forgot to look for a few things while i had the chance!)

kim was simply astounded—and that’s saying a lot since she just got back from a trip to japan.

this is just some of the rice . . . what was on the shelf at the end of aisle. there was, in addition, a whole aisle of just rice and when i turned around

even more rice (and that doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface of the items made from rice). i snagged some jasmine rice which i haven’t had in the house for a few years.

i may also have shamed myself over the variety of frozen dumplings they carry . . .

and, if you are looking for a particular sauce

they probably have it.
i stocked up on some asian greens and veggies to make a soup this week (along with steamed dumplings—now we have to use all the ones i bought).

this store is definitely on my list of places to return to; the prices are great and—something i REALLY appreciate, but did not at all expect—every item they carry has the name printed in english somewhere on it, making it easy to navigate and try new things. in a smaller store you could ask for help with names, but in a large store like this it would be easy to get lost among all the choices.

after that we finished up with a stop at whole foods to buy cheese and a few other things. they don’t let people take pictures there but the kindly guy at the cheese counter let me sneak in a photo of the cheese that starts off the post.

when i explained that is was for “knitting research”, he nodded sagely and proceeded to pull out more examples of visually gorgeous cheeses, explaining which ones were mostly just pretty (an not such great cheese), and which ones were truly a heavenly marriage of flavor and eye candy (with samples of course, to further the “research”). this is the second time i have shopped at that store’s cheese counter and each time i have been highly impressed with the guys behind the counter—they REALLY love what they do.

when we got back and managed to get all the goods put away, david and i made our favorite pizza for dinner. he cuts up all the ingredients while i make the sauce and form the pizza shells. last night we used the first of the tiny garden squash sliced over the top, along with fresh-picked basil, mushrooms, and fresh mozzarella. the sauce was cooked using both frozen and dried tomatoes from last year’s garden.


i did some knitting too this weekend but since this post is getting quite long, i think i’ll save that for tomorrow . . . let’s just say that guava makes a good dessert!

35 thoughts on “food is good

  1. Have you tried guava paste and plain cream cheese spread on Saltines? Sounds weird, but, my, is it good after cheese enchiladas or some other great Mexican feast. Looks like a great shopping area with so many different ethnic varieties. It’s a good thing we don’t live near each other – we’d be shopping rather than working. Fortunately for you, your shopping can be called working. As a casemanager for people with acquired head injuries, I would be hard pressed to justify Whole Foods, the Asian place, or any other specialty shops. Glad to see you had a good diversion for the day.!

  2. You know, almost every time!! I see food here I get an instant case of hunger! Oh that market looks like a wonderful place to go, worth the one hour drive. I chuckled when I saw the pic of the guy behind the counter and what you wrote – like minds here:) If you are ever in SF let me know, I’ll drag you around to all kinds of stores and markets! It’ll be fun.

  3. oh my – I’d be dangerous going shopping with you – everything looks so luscious…. and what great buns (ahem) lol.

  4. Wow, thanks for the heads-up on the Asian market! I didn’t know we had such a comprehensive one in the Cleveland area, I really have to get over there sometime soon.

    Isn’t the WSM grand?

  5. I was born and raised in Cleveland, moving to Seattle six years ago. You just made me ridiculously homesick and stirred many found memories… Thank you.

  6. Now that looks GOOD! And I am so jealous, especially of the Asian market. We can get decent breads and cheeses here without too much trouble, but it’s not so easy to score good Asian ingredients. Huge sacks of rice, what a concept!

  7. This post made me HUNGRY! I wouldn’t even know where to go to find a place like this but I’m sure there are some in Boston.

  8. Anne, your post brings back such wonderful memories. I love that market. Half of my family is from the Cleveland area. Are we going to see a Blue Cheese Wrap in the future?

  9. Anne, darling, have mercy on the newly-awake this morning. Was “thirty year old starter” a pun too?

  10. I love places like that! I esp love the photo of the cheese with the layer of ashes separating the morning and evening milk in the cheese. It tastes good too! Was the bakery a Greek bakery ?? What was the Mt. Athos fire bread like? My father used to go to Mt. Athos a lot when we lived in Greece and photographed the monks. He won a prize when he entered a photo with the Saturday Review magazine back in the late 60’s.

  11. Anne- When you guys find time to come up to Toronto- I’ll take you to The St. Lawrence Market, which is famous, great atmosephere, as well as Kensington where we can go to “The Urban Herbivore”- you would adore Toronto.

    And I’d have made off with those Key Lime Tarts!

  12. Fun! I wish I could visit! The pizzas are superb! I opened your blog this morning, and the white square shows up. I couldn’t figure out what the heck it was: knitting? Vegetable? Ice with something in it? I never guessed cheese!!

  13. Next time you are at the West Side Market on a Friday or Saturday, stop by Farkas Bakery, on Lorain, about West 28th. Great Hungarian Bakery made with the real stuff.

    And the pizza looks wonderful!

  14. You always have such lovely pictures! I wish you start including some recipes with those dishes you make because they look so delicious!

  15. I’m with Debbie. Farkas’ napoleons are to die for. That pizza is making my mouth water!

    On the sunshine front…just ignore. Some people are just SMALL.

    I’ll miss everyone at class today but am going to check out the Chautauqua lys.

  16. I’m coming for dinner, OK? Maybe for the week….you probably have some yarn I could wind for you, right?

  17. Made my mouth water. I like your style of cooking. I am trying to learn by watching your blog. I even planted zucchini and tomato plants in a little patch so I can roast them the way you do. I am now in an all-out war with bugs – lace is everywhere, even my zucchini plants.

  18. What a timely post! On Wednesday, we are accompanying some friends to help them move into their new house in Cleveland. And they are both foodies. Perfect. Would you be willing to share your tomato drying tips? That pizza looks good enough to eat.

  19. This weekend I hosted a Japanese dinner party. I fully understand the joy of an Asian grocery, or any good food market.
    It sounds like you have close friends who know lots of Japanese cooking tricks, but I have some cookbooks (and recipes) I can recommend if you’re interested.

  20. that looks fabulous! You know what’s funny about that? I saw the market & the cheeses and thought ‘ooh, I’m so jealous! I wish I had someplace like that I could go’ – and then I remembered, I don’t live in North Carolina anymore!! I live in Philadelphia, and I can go shopping like that too!!!

    It’s amusing that I kind of forget that I live here now.

  21. Wow – a market! I have not seen one in the USA. We have lots in Melbourne, Oz, and I love them. The sounds, the smells, the amazing stuff you can get… Yours looks like the delicatessen part of our biggest market.

  22. oooh, i have got to get to the westside market! i haven’t been in anyplace like that since i was in italy, and i kinda miss it…i could just drool over those pastas…

  23. That settles it – as soon as I find your address I am coming to live with you. You dream up the best recipes, grow beautiful things to eat, and design awesome knitwear – what more is there to life? Just kidding! Seeing the West Side Market makes me homesick, even though I haven’t lived there since 1979. I do generally visit my family once a year, though. And where is that incredible Asian market? I will have to check that one out next time I am there. I guess I will go back to gazing at my wee tomato plants that are probably in too shady a spot to respond well (then again, all I seem to have is shade).

  24. Oh I love the market! We haven’t been in forever.. now I really want to go. Next time you’re there you have to try the Pierogies. They are just as good as the Ohio City Pasta Ravioli (hard to imagine, I know).

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